In 1963, Germany's automotive industry was saw the birth of a vehicle that would go on to be one of the most iconic and desired sports vehicles ever produced. Even today, fifty four years after the first generation was launched still encapsulates those who experience the German precision and engineering for themselves. We of course are talking about Porsche's iconic 911. The rear mounted straight six engine, two-plus-two design along with its independent suspension created a sports car that performed spectacularly, even with the prejudiced positioning of the engine.
Over fifty four years the Porsche 911 has evolved through seven generations spanning three different chassis platforms from 1965 to present. The original 901 (renamed to 911 after disputes with French manufacture Peugeot over naming rights - more commonly referred to as the 'classic'), 930, 964 and 993 all featured the air cooled engines. The introduction of the 996 brought with it the first of the watercooled engined 911's. Following the 996 came the 997 and the 991 which is the current generation being sold today. Not only that, but it is the specimen being featured in our portfolio receiving an Enhancement Detail..
The car was delivered to us in a generally reasonable condition. Road soiling, various areas of polish residues accompanied moderate to heavy marring and swirling reducing the overall appearance of this modern Porsche design. The client maintains the car well himself, although the issue was raised of the paintwork being so soft in nature it was proving difficult to wash the vehicle without imparting marring or swirls.
To begin the cleansing processes our attention was turned to the wheels by misting an all-purpose cleaner (APC) onto the tire wall and into the arch wells. A stiff bristled brush was used to scrub the tyre wall in order to lift dirt from the rubber before a separate long reach brush agitated the arch liners to release road soiling and build up. The wheel itself was covered in a liberal amount of a safe wheel cleaning agent and an assortment of wheel brushes and wheel woollies to work brake dust free from the face, inner barrel and rear of the spokes without the requirement to remove the wheel from the car. With all areas of the wheel agitated a thorough pressure rinse followed to carry away soap suds and any lifted brake dust, ensuring the arch areas were rinsed also. A fallout remover was misted onto each wheel and left to dwell during our time preparing the wash buckets. Any remaining metal particles and bonded brake dust would be highlighted by the fallout remover changing to a deep purple colour. This change of colour is caused by a chemical reaction that transforms the originally bonded particles into a water soluble state.
Once a few minutes had been allowed for the product to begin its chemical reactions, the wheels were once again agitated before thoroughly rinsing the wheels with a pressure washer to remove any remaining product and contaminants. This process was repeated until the bonded brake dust had been removed.
The engine compartment was lightly misted with a diluted APC and a boars hair detailing brush was used to work the cleaner, paying extra attention to joints, corners and other harder to reach areas where dirt can easy accumulate. A rinse of all areas was carefully carried out avoiding any delicate components such as air intakes and electrical items. The door shuts and under-bonnet area, which would be the storage compartment on Porsche's, were also lightly cleansed with an APC and a boars hair detailing brush. With the hidden areas done, attention was turned to the bodywork by firstly raising the electronic rear spoiler and then pressure rinsing the entire vehicle free of any surface debris and grit. A layer of Gyeon Q2MFoam was then applied via a snowfoam lance attachment of the pressure washer and was left to dwell for approximately 3-5minutes.
After the Q2MFoam had dwelled for a few minutes in order to soften and breakdown any stubborn dirt that the pressure rinse could not remove, the remains of foam were rinsed thoroughly ensuring that the surface would be made safer to wash by removing as much loose surface grit as possible. Gyeon Q2MBathe was used alongside a two bucket wash method and a high quality synthetic wash mitt to gently wash the paintwork of the car. Working from the upper panels down to the lower areas the car was removed of any remaining soiling ensuring the wash mitt was placed into the second bucket of clean water after every panel; the two bucket method comprises of one bucket being filled with the was solution (in this case Gyeon Q2MBathe) and one containing only water, this ensures dirt trapped in the wash mitt is deposited into the clean water and the wash solution remains clean.
Once again the Porsche was carefully rinsed of any suds and lifted soiling before beginning the first of three decontamination stages. The first decontamination stage would be to remove any tar spot deposits that may have collected over time. A dedicated solvent-based tar remover was misted generously onto the panel being treated. A microfiber cloth was also misted with some tar removing agent before massaging the product after leaving it to work for an approximate 30-60 seconds. If any larger tar deposits remained, the panel/area was re-treated until all was removed. A fallout remover was then applied liberally onto all exterior surfaces of the Porsche before allowing 6-8minutes dwelling time. In this time the product would indicate any metallic particles present on the paint surface by changing from a clear liquid to a deep purple. This change in colour is caused by a chemical reaction that begins to transform the initially bonded particles into a water soluble state. As the Porsche is black, this chemical reaction is a little difficult to capture on camera (if you'd like to see what the reaction looks like scroll up to see it applied to the wheels). The third and final stage of our decontamination process would be to use a surface preparation towel (a claybar alternative) to ensure the panels are totally smooth and contamination free in readiness to begin the machine polishing processes.
Now that the surface preparation towel had been used to work away the remaining over spray and ferrous particle contamination, the decontamination processes would be complete. A secondary layer of Q2MFoam was then applied at a weaker dilution to the first, as this layer of foam would be used to simply carry away lifted contaminants and ensure any fallout or tar agents are forced out of any body gaps and crevasses.
A final rinse of the vehicle cleared any foam residues away after an approximate two minute dwell time. More attention was given to areas that could trap and collect water and any product used in the decontamination stages. After its rinse, the Porsche was moved indoors to be dried down using a combination of drying towels and warm filtered air; the warm air being ideal for blowing standing water from grills, badges and other areas that often drip for hours after the washing processes.
Dried and moved over to the detailing area, the time came to inspect the Porsche's paint condition. A combination of LED floodlights, Halogen work lamp and a sun-gun alternative supplied three different lighting temperatures and sources to ensure defects were clearly visible.
As shown inthe images above, alot of swirling, wash marring and general defects accumulated over time. With the nature of Porsche paint being incredibly soft it was no surprise the paint condition looked this way. A second way we inspected the paintwork was using a paint thickness gauge (also known as a paint depth gauge, PTG/PDG). This tool is essential when machine polishing vehicles to ensure that any thin/thick areas are highlighted in order to take more caution around any areas showing inconsistent readings.
With the paint readings hovering in the 70-90 micron area the Porsche would be a vehicle that would need to be polished both intensively but responsibly. As the owner opted for our Enhancement Detail service, the intention was to improve the overall condition of the car by removing swirls and lighter defects. Deeper scratches, heavy swirling and other defects were to be improved but not entirely removed. This is the best compromise for vehicles which are used on a regular basis but the owner wants to restore that 'as-new' appearance to their paintwork. Koch Chemie F5 and M2 polishes were used in conjunction with Lake Country polishing pads via a dual action polisher with a large-throw. Whilst the F5 is a polish that has the ability to remove the defects required, the super-soft paintwork meant that even this fine polish was then leaving its own imparted defects, more commonly known as micro-marring. After trialing various finishing-down techniques to try and get the best finish from the paintwork, it was found that the M2 ultra-fine finishing polish was just as essential as the first stage to remove the minor defects now remaining whilst maximizing depth and gloss.
Each panel was completed with a final wipe down using Gyeon Q2MPrep removed any remaining polishing oils and residues. Doing so prepares the paintwork for its application of Gyeon Q2MOHS by ensuring that the paint is as clean as possible, making the bond between the ceramic coating and the paint surface far greater.
Two layers of Gyeon Q2MOHS were then applied to the Porsche's paintwork ensuring that all residues were thoroughly buffed away when working on each section. Any product that was incorrectly buffed away or left behind would begin to harden, requiring that section to be re-polished and thus re-applied with Q2MOHS. Once both layers had been installed, our infrared technology was used to speed up the curing of the Q2MOHS; Gyeon Quartz coatings require a full twenty four hours to cure after the second coat is applied - infrared reduces this time to ten minutes per panel when at sixty degrees. Gyeon Q2TRIM was applied to all exterior plastic trim surfaces and also cured under infrared to prevent them fading in the next twelve months.
During the time spent force curing the coating, a few smaller details were given some attention to pass time and to move the vehicle closer to completion. The wheels were given a light mist of Gyeon Q2MCure and buffed free of any dust collected through the polishing stages. Tyres were then treated with Gyeon Q2MTire for a subtle as-new appearance. During the time curing the body panels, the Gyeon Q2MTire was also heated to extend its durability to the maximum. Rubber areas such as window seals were preserved and protected using Gtechniq T1 Tyre&Trim with its ability to enhance the look of rubber surfaces whilst preventing them becoming prematurely dry over time and causing cracking or fading. Glass was cleared of any dust, polish residues and general smudges using Auto Finesse Crystal glass cleaner. Arch liners, engine compartment and the plastic covering located under the front storage compartment were restored with both Auto Finesse Revive and Dressle trim dressings, providing an over-satin finish to the plastics effortlessly. Once the whole car had been cured for ten minutes per panel, a final step would be to apply Gyeon Q2MCure to all coated surfaces. Whilst the coating is now cured enough for the vehicle to be exposed to the elements, it takes seven-to-fourteen days for the product to fully harden. This fortnight is where the coating is most prone to water marking - Q2MCure acts as a sacrificial layer that minimizes this water spotting occurring until the coating is cured fully. All areas were then checked using a sun-gun alternative to ensure no smears of Q2MCure remained, door shuts were also buffed with the product in order to add some protection to these areas often more neglected.
To finalize the Porsche's Enhancement Detail our attention was then turned to the interior. Vacuuming all surfaces carefully using a soft interior detailing brush to remove any dust from switch-gear, controls and vents before Auto Finesse Spritz interior detailer was spread onto all interior plastic surfaces. Once again Crystal was used to buff the glass to a smear free finish and floor mats were given a thorough vacuum of minor crumb build up.
With the close of the door, this 991 Porsche now looks stunning with the added benefits of Gyeon Q2MOHS providing additional hardness and eighteen months protection...